March 20, 2024

These maternal-fetal professionals are here to support you throughout pregnancy and delivery.

No one wants to hear their pregnancy is considered “high-risk.” But no matter the reason for the designation — whether a preexisting health condition, multiples gestation, placental problems, lifestyle factors, etc. — it’s important you have the right team in place to ensure you receive the best care possible throughout your pregnancy, delivery and beyond.

At Vanderbilt Health, you’ll have a team of maternal-fetal professionals with you every step of the way. Here’s who will be on your high-risk pregnancy care team:

Your obstetrician

A common question patients have when learning their pregnancy is high-risk is “Will I get to keep my OB?” And the answer is usually yes.

“Most of the time patients are going to continue to see their primary OB/GYN and meet with a maternal-fetal medicine specialist for consultations,” said Emily W. Taylor, a maternal-fetal medicine nurse practitioner with The Fetal Center at Vanderbilt. “In some cases, a maternal-fetal medicine provider may assume primary OB care, but that’s only if the patient’s condition warrants it.”

Maternal-fetal medicine specialist

Also called a perinatologist, the maternal-fetal medicine specialist is an OB with additional training in high-risk pregnancies. Depending on the reason your pregnancy is considered high-risk, you may only visit with this specialist once or multiple times throughout your pregnancy. Maternal-fetal medicine specialists can diagnose and treat conditions, abnormalities and defects affecting you and your baby during pregnancy.

Genetic counselor

Genetic testing is available to all mothers interested in learning how likely it is their baby will be born with a genetic disorder. This service is 100% optional whether your pregnancy is high-risk or not.

Your genetic counselor can help you decide whether or not to have genetic testing done and will assist you in interpreting the results should you decide to move forward with testing.


This physician works in the neonatal intensive care unit, caring for babies who are born prematurely or have medical problems that require specialized care. If your baby is diagnosed with a serious condition in utero, you may meet with a neonatologist while you’re pregnant to discuss a care plan for after delivery.

Patient care coordinator

Navigating a high-risk pregnancy can be stressful. Fortunately, your patient care coordinator is there to help you stay organized. This team member will help you schedule appropriate consultations, ensure medical records are shared with consulting physicians and brief your primary OB on necessary updates to your care plan, help coordinate delivery planning and generally offer support throughout pregnancy.

“When we meet our patients and their families, we have an opportunity provide support, reassurance and hope in what may be one of the most frightening and uncertain times for the/ir entire family,” said Sarah Kremer, a certified registered nurse and fetal medicine nurse coordinator with Vanderbilt Health. “Through time spent getting to know each of our patients and their families, we strive to provide the most comprehensive individualized care for each and every patient that comes through our center.”


It’s not too early to start thinking about your baby’s primary care home. If you know your baby may have complex needs, consider choosing a pediatric primary care clinic that can seamlessly coordinate care with pediatric specialists. The Pediatric Primary Care Program at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt offers easy access to Monroe Carell’s network of experts.

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Expert care for you and your baby

Each pregnancy and delivery is unique and yours should be too. Learn more about how Vanderbilt Health’s obstetrics and maternal fetal medicine teams bring together nationally ranked expertise and personalized care from your first prenatal visit to delivery and beyond.

To learn more, call 615-343-5700 or schedule an appointment online.

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